Fuel Sender, Seat Belts, Windshield Oops

After last week’s gasoline shower when draining the tank I did some research and came upon these things called a Curtis Drain.

Curtis drain

They are awesome! They work just the same at the regular drains but you can twist them so that they lock in the open position – perfect for draining out the tanks. Why aren’t these standard in the kit?? After draining out the last dregs in the passenger tank, I installed them into the two sumps on the passenger side.

This still leaves the pilot side which doesn’t have the fancy drains yet but to help with that Allen arrived with this improvised device

Allen's fuel drainer invention

The pipe inside the plastic tubing can be pushed against the drain to open it and the gasoline flows inside the tubing and into the funnel – genius!

To cut a 90 minute story short, I got the fuel sender out of the tank and when it was measured the angle of bend was a good 20 degrees off of the spec and the end wasn’t all that straight so this was fixed and the sender placed back in the tank (anyone familiar with this process will know that last statement is akin to saying “and then we implemented Brexit”). This will get tested tomorrow.

I’m trying to get the baggage area wrapped up so I can put the side windows in so fuselage wrapping can continue. The hole for the windows makes a great place to get inside the area to do things. One of those things is to install the seat belts and after some tricky wrenching (I can’t imagine how one person could do this on their own) we had them on.

Seat belt installed

Next up was to get the windshield out and see what few things needed to be done to finish that up. Well, first off there’s this

Cowl and windshield too close

It might look like this is ok but there’s a rubber trim that goes on the windshield that will make about a half inch overlap. We’ll need to shave the cowl back a bit there in the centre and possibly the windshield too. Well, that brings up problem two – if the bottom edge of the windshield changes, the shape changes and then the side holes that were already drilled will no longer be a match to the holes on the cabin. But! That doesn’t matter because the holes don’t line up anyway.

That last statement is a baffling one, I’m sure that when we put the windshield away it was fitting just perfect so I can’t explain what has happened. My Dad thinks perhaps the engine install and running has tightened some bolts, made a small change to the cabin shape, who knows. Whatever the reason there’s still some work to do on the windshield.

The last thing of the day was to get the seat pan in place on the passenger side, it just would not go in. Some screwdrivers for wedges eventually got it in place – and most of the holes were lined up too!

More progress, a few more obstacles: c’est la guerre.